If weed was legal, would it then be right for Christians to have a joint here or there? Indeed, can you picture Jesus lighting a joint in the Garden of Gethsemane to take the edge off the day? Where does one draw the line with intoxicating substances?
When it comes to weed, the line can be problematic.
Firstly, cannabis is not in the Bible. And secondly, weed is legal in some places. So, does that mean its right? What if weed became legal in the UK? Would it then be okay for Christians in this country to smoke it? The answer, in my opinion, is no.
Pot may not be in the Bible, but neither are guns – and yet both are harmful and dangerous.
Shouts of “weed helps us relate to others” can also be heard from the dugouts of the drug’s supporters. But as Christians, we are not called to be like the world. In fact the opposite is seen in the second chapter of 1 John, which states ‘do not love the world or anything in the world’. Jesus associated with prostitutes and with tax collectors. But he did not engage in their activities; he presented something different. That is what we should reflect as Christians in the world today – after all, we carry the Jesus Flag, as Mark Driscoll so nicely refers to it.
Weed may be legal in some areas of the world, but law does not determine sin. If someone is caught in the act of adultery, they are not automatically sent to prison. And yet, adultery is wrong.
And what about alcohol? That has an intoxicating effect on the person ingesting it, and yet Jesus turned water into a whole lot of wine at the wedding at Cana. But, the Bible also says in the book of Ephesians ‘don’t be drunk with wine, because that will ruin your life. Instead be filled with the Holy Spirit’. The Home Office minister, Jeremy Browne, stated that the strength of cannabis has increased significantly in the past few years, so that “it is the equivalent of people going from drinking a pint of beer to drinking a pint of neat vodka”. With that in mind – would smoking weed then be classed as a drunken state?
Intoxicating substances are dangerous without self control. But that also applies to sex, work, money and a lot in this world. Everyone struggles with these issues, but that does not make it okay to add another temptation to the list.
So, what is our purpose in this world? The Bible says it is to become more like God, to show his light to the world and to love others as he loved. It’s a pretty high bar. So if weed is going to make you closer to Jesus, more like Jesus, love others like him, and stand out for his cause in this broken world, then by all means – smoke away.